The Italian legal system provides for the legal protection of an adult individual who is incapable of taking care of his/her own affairs by means of three institutions:
this protective measure completely deprives the person of his/her capacity to act and instead requires a tutor to perform all legal acts relating to the individual;
this protective measure prohibits the individual from carrying out acts beyond the limits imposed by the adjudication without the curator, but allows the individual to perform acts within the imposed limits
introduced by Law 6/2004.
With this measure, the person is assisted and/or replaced by a guardian in the performance of certain acts established by the guardianship judge, while retaining full capacity to act in all other instances
The three institutions exist side by side, though they are inspired by different philosophies.
Guardianship is aimed at protecting the individual and respecting residual capabilities rather than indiscriminately prohibiting the performance of personal and financial acts, as may occur in the case of interdiction or incapacitation.
Even at the transnational level, guardianship is the institution that best applies what is set out in Art. 12 of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, dedicated to the recognition, in every place and by any means, of the legal personality of persons with disabilities.